Politics
South Slave

Smith’s Landing election re-run puts 23-year-old in office


The second running of a Smith’s Landing First Nation election, after the first set of results was partly overturned, saw a previously disqualified candidate take office.

Skye MacDonald should not have been disqualified from the first election by the returning officer, an arbitrator found in July, ordering that the first set of results be voided and the election held again.

This time, MacDonald won one of the four council seats with 62 votes.

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“Although I was unjustly disqualified the first time around, I am very honoured to be the youngest elected councillor to represent Smith’s Landing First Nation,” MacDonald wrote to Cabin Radio on Tuesday.

“I’m an aspiring lawyer and I hope to take on an advocacy role for our membership,” said the 23-year-old, “whether it be by simply attending appointments with them, or helping them navigate through the childcare and legal systems.

“I promise to lead our Nation in a transparent and respectable manner, and will seek guidance from Elders along the way.”

Thaidene Paulette, Tony Vermillion, and Fred Daniels won the remaining positions in the August 26 re-run, with 62, 57, and 55 votes respectively.

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In the first election, on June 12, Thaidene Paulette, Tony Vermillion, Delphine Paulette-Clark, and Geronimo Paulette had been elected.

MacDonald’s disqualification, on non-residency grounds, was one of eight alleged irregularities – two of which were upheld.

Chief Gerry Cheezie, elected in June, remained in his position. The arbitrator said the election for chief had not been affected by the irregularities upheld.

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